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S. Korea, U.S., Japan hold trilateral security talks

All Headlines 11:06 June 02, 2019

By Oh Seok-min

SINGAPORE, June 2 (Yonhap) -- The defense ministers of South Korea, the United States and Japan held a trilateral meeting in Singapore on Sunday to discuss North Korea and other security challenges.

South Korean Defense Minister Jeong Kyeong-doo, acting U.S. Defense Minister Patrick Shanahan and their Japanese counterpart, Takeshi Iwaya, held the talks on the sidelines of the Asia Security Summit, also known as the Shangri-La Dialogue, in Singapore.

In his opening remarks, Jeong said the three nations have successfully led North Korea to change its course, and called for concerted efforts to bring it back to the negotiation table.

Stressing the importance of the trilateral security mechanism in "achieving the complete denuclearization of North Korea in a fully verified manner," Shanahan vowed his country's continued prioritization of trilateral defense cooperation.

The meeting took place at a time when negotiations on North Korea's nuclear programs have been stalled since the breakdown of the second summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Hanoi in February.

Since then, Pyongyang has been slowly escalating tensions by hardening its rhetoric against Seoul and Washington and launching projectiles, including short-range missiles.

The South Korean and Japanese ministers held a one-on-one meeting a day earlier, and Jeong will have a bilateral meeting with Shanahan on Monday in Seoul.

graceoh@yna.co.kr
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